Peterson: Boehner Doubts Senate Can Pass Its Version of Farm Bill

May 23, 2012 04:32 AM

via a special arrangement with Informa Economics, Inc.

In interview with CQ, Peterson says commodity title in coming House bill to look far different than Senate

NOTE: This column is copyrighted material, therefore reproduction or retransmission is prohibited under U.S. copyright laws.

Ever-talkative and farm bill promoter Rep. Collin Peterson (D-Minn.) is at it again. The ranking member of the House Ag Committee, in an interview with CQ's Philip Brasher, gave the following farm bill development, many of which have been reported previously:

  • House Ag panel looking to markup its bill week of June 18

  • If timeline is followed, hope to conference bill before August recess, or by Sept. 30 at the latest

  • Farmers in Peterson's district do not believe Congress can pass new farm bill this year

  • If conference report can be completed by August, Peterson thinks it can would not take long to get through Senate and House. "We've got all the scores. We've got all the language," he told CQ.

  • House farm bill will have target prices, set along the levels of last fall's farm bill draft (see table below for details). With one major exception: barley. Peterson said the barley target price would be pegged to the price of wheat, since the brewing industry buys malting barley for 90 percent of the wheat price. Rice and peanut growers would get the rates they want, about $14 per 100 pounds for rice and $534 a ton for peanuts.

  • House farm bill may have insurance alternative to Senate's Ag Risk Coverage (ARC) program, a provision authorizing a new supplemental crop insurance policy as an alternative to the shallow-loss subsidy plan/ARC. Rep. Mike Conaway (R-Texas) has previously pushed this idea via HR 3107 legislation by Rep. Randy Neugebauer (R-Texas).

  • Peterson said House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) doubts the Senate can pass its version of the bill, "If the Senate moves it and we're able to move a bill out of committee that is bipartisan, then he'll get to be at the point where he has to make a decision," Peterson told CQ. "Frankly, at that point, I don't see that they have much choice but to put it on the floor. What would be their excuse not to do it?"

Although there is no official draft farm bill language relative to the aborted attempt late last year to link a new farm bill with the failed Super Committee bill, the following, according to usually reliable sources, were the proposed target prices (called "reference" prices in the draft) -- Note: As part of its farm bill proposal, the National Cotton Council (NCC) did not include a target price for the cotton program. 



Current Target Price

Proposed Target Price

Wheat (bu.)



Corn (bu.)



Grain Sorghum (bu.)



Feed barley (bu.)



Oats (bu.)



Rice, Long grain (cwt.)



Rice, Medium grain (cwt.)



Soybeans (bu.)



Peanuts (ton)



Dry peas (cwt.)



Lentils (cwt.)



Small chickpeas (cwt.)



Large chickpeas (cwt.)



Sunflower seed * (cwt.)



Rapeseed * (cwt.)



Canola * (cwt.)



Safflower * (cwt.)



Flaxseed * (cwt.)



Mustard seed * (cwt.)



* = Defined as "other oilseeds" via the 2008 Farm Bill, including sunflower seed, canola, rapeseed, safflower, mustard seed, flaxseed, crambe and sesame seed.  



NOTE: This column is copyrighted material, therefore reproduction or retransmission is prohibited under U.S. copyright laws.






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